Visiting Bondora’s office in Tallinn

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Last week I traveled to Tallinn, Estonia to visit Bondora. I brought my mom who also invested in Bondora. Visiting a company always gives a better impression of your investment decision. Most of my questions had already been answered on email beforehand but we got a chance to meet and greet the people working there which I highly appreciate.

We traveled with airBaltic from Denmark, through Riga to Tallinn. During the visit we were staying at the TALLINK Spa & Conference Hotel, located in the old town of Tallinn. It’s a nice hotel with a very good breakfast buffet and a wonderful Spa area.

TALLINK Spa & Conference Hotel

View of the pool from the hotel lobby. Notice the bar, serving drinks in water level

Meeting the Bondora team

Greeting Bondora’s employees in person was a pleasant experience. Everyone was very kind and we got a chance to talk to all the people with I’ve exchanged emails with over the past few years.

Bondora. Head of Investor Relations
Head of investor relations, Matthew Clannachan, was very kind to show us around
Bondora. Work and fun go hand in hand.
Reelika Virunurm & Temiloluwa Adetola. Work and fun go hand in hand
Bondora office
Nice and open office space

Questions asked

  • Quality of borrowers

I wanted to get a little more insight into the screening process of new borrowers. To me it seems like more borrowers default on Bondora than on other platforms. We got a detailed explanation of how the automated process works without coming to any conclusions on whether it’s good enough.

  •  Recovery in Spain

Quite a few of my Spanish loans have defaulted. Recently Bondora put a lot of effort into filing Estonian loans to the court. Naturally, I wanted to hear when something similar was planned in Spain. Bondora explained they had been working on sending out “pay now or we will take the case to court” documents to defaulted borrowers lately. I got the impression that those who doesn’t pay will be taken to court starting from Q2. Bondora is expecting recoveries from the Spanish market to increase manyfold in 2018. I hope they are right 🙂

  • Better liquidity

I asked for better liquidity options. Other platforms offer buy back guarantee which makes it very easy to sell your portfolio without losses. Unfortunately, Bondora doesn’t offer buy back guarantee and they don’t plan to introduce it.

However, they do have another product in the pipeline. There’s no official information out yet but they plan to inform about in the coming months. This product should offer better liquidity at the cost of a lower interest rate. I’m not sure if it will be competitive but we will see.

Bondora’s office

Tammsaare Business Center
Bondora’s office is located in the Tammsaare Business Center
Tammsaare Business Center 3rd floor
Bondora is located on the 3rd floor
Bondora logo wall
This is the first thing you see when you enter the office
Bondora meeting room
One of Bondora’s meeting rooms

Getting around in Tallinn

Being one of the leading FinTech cities in Europe, Tallinn offers a Taxi service called Taxify. It’s more or less the same as Uber but it’s cheaper and there are always a lot of cars available due to the huge local support. When you request a ride you can choose between 4 different types; Taxify (budget), Comfort, Tesla or XL.

We used the service 11 times in 2½ days and the average cost was 5€. I’m a fan!

Taxify app
The Taxify app is very easy to use. You can even follow the destination of the car you hired
Taxify Tesla Model X
This was my first ride in a Tesla Model X. Stunning car!

Sightseeing in the Old Town of Tallinn

Tallinn Tourist Office
The Tourist Office offers free guided tours every day from 12:00 – 14:00. English speaking guides. Highly recommended.
Tallinn old town castle
A lot of the old buildings from the 13th century are still preserved
Tallinn old town map
The old town was guarded by a wall and defense towers.
Alexander Nevsky Cathedral
Alexander Nevsky Cathedral – Typical Russian Revival style built between 1894 and 1900
Parliament of Estonia
Parliament of Estonia
Old town of Tallinn
A typical street in the old town of Tallinn
Christmas trees in Tallinn
The lampposts were turned into glowing white Christmas trees
Cake and coffee with cream
The temperature was around -6 degrees. No excuse needed for a hot cup of coffee with cream and a piece of cake
Big Christmas tree in Tallinn
The big Christmas tree was still up on January 12th

That’s it for this time. I really enjoyed the trip and I’m seriously thinking about visiting some of the other companies I invested into.

I’m looking forward to giving you another portfolio update on February 1st. Stay tuned!

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